What Really Happens to Our Medical Waste

What Really Happens to Our Medical Waste

What Really Happens to Our Medical Waste

We've all sat in the doctor's office and watched our physicians throw away needles, gloves, and other medical waste into those big red containers.  But where does all that medical waste go?  When you are creating medical waste, you are making sure that it undergoes a special waste management process that isn't exactly safe for sanitary workers or the environment around them.  Here's what really happens to our medical waste once it leaves our physician's office.  

What is Medical Waste?

Medical waste and biohazardous waste requires a special process once it is removed from medical facilities.  Medical waste is anything that is used in the treatment of patients, whether it is helping to diagnose, treat, or immunize patients.  This includes needles, bloody bandages, culture dishes, surgical gloves, instruments, syringes, and even discarded organs.  These are then grouped into categories and prepared for proper removal.  Radioactive and hazardous waste pose the most concern, because it must be dealt with in a precise and particular manner.


The majority of medical and biohazardous waste is burned in incinerators in order to ensure proper removal.  There are many licensed contractors and facilities that are trained to handle infectious, hazardous, and radioactive medical waste, and they perform this service.  Incineration creates less waste overall.  Once the waste is incinerated, the remains are sent to landfills.


Autoclaves, or steam sterilizers, is the most effective and dependable way to eliminate medical waste and reduce the microbial life that may still exist in the waste.  Strong heated containers use high pressures and temperatures to sterilize the medical waste and remove toxins.  There are dangers to this process, including potential burns, exposure to biohazardous waste, and other bodily injuries.  This waste also ends up in a sanitary landfill once it is sterilized.

Improper Waste Removal

Often times, unsegregated medical waste can end up polluting landfills and taking up unnecessary space needed for decomposable trash.  When medical waste is disposed of incorrectly, it can pose many risks to sanitization workers, such as needle pricks and exposure to diseases.  Avoid the life threatening risks of improper medical waste removal by training and educating your medical staff so that they can properly dispose of any biohazardous waste.

Alternative Medical Waste Treatment

Because of the negative environmental impacts of burning and sterilizing medical waste, there are now alternative medical waste treatment options.  These reduce the risks and dangers of conventional medical waste removal by eliminating pollution and minimizing health hazards.  These earth friendly waste disposal process avoid the use of incineration and autoclave and instead reduces the carbon footprint by 90%.  No Dixons and furans are produced in this process.  The technology and eco-friendly disinfectants used in alternative medical waste treatment plants like Steri Green in Orlando help to make the earth a better place.  This gives medical facilities are sustainable, safe, and clean way to dispose of their waste while still following regulations.

As an alternative medical waste treatment plant, we at Steri Green offer an environmentally safe medical waste removal option.  We strive to minimize the carbon footprint and keep the environment healthy and safe while still properly removing medical waste.  Contact us today to hear more